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Behind the ‘Screens’

There is much to understand about working and learning virtually. As the School plans for every possible scenario in the fall, what is front of mind for me is the imperative to connect with people and foster ways to better understand what life is like for people ‘behind the screens.’ Gathering diverse perspectives from all involved and combining these with educational best practices is important; however, ensuring it informs change for the better is imperative. Our girls’ learning and well-being relies on it.

This, too, is what is needed in our world, our country, and our community too.

In last week’s blog I wrote that we need to be sure that our community is one that “engages our girls in their learning to have the courage to be who they are and to act out their beliefs in order to make this troubled world a better place.”

The same has to be said for our School. If we wish to foster learning, we must also be able to demonstrate the courage to change. We must consider others’ perspectives and lived experiences, and then act to change processes and structures that enable inequity.

Our assembly this past week was to be an All-House Assembly, an end of year celebration which traditionally involves wearing House colours and participating in spirited challenges. Instead, we listened while SCS students and educators alike articulated what life is like behind their ‘screens’ as a result of racism and, in particular, anti-Black racism.  Their courage, passion, and emotion provided a powerful, honest, difficult, and necessary reminder to our community that we must first listen and seek to understand and then we must act.

As a school that is built upon privilege, it is too easy to look the other way, to focus only on one’s own situation, to measure issues against only our own individual experiences.

As a school that believes that learning and well-being must be front of mind as we prepare our girls for the future, we cannot look the other way. We have a responsibility to ensure that we are always looking behind the ‘screens’ to understand the impacts of inequity.

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